Wednesday, March 3, 2010

My Ode

I adapted the structure (loosely) of Carson's "Ode to Sleep" to write a poem about a band. Played with Antlers lyrics in places, in others I was just trying to put into words what listening to them feels like. Their lyrics often involve hospitals, death, etc, so this is what I came up with:

Ode to Antlers

With the door closed, shades drawn, you're dead enough.
The ghosts gather at the foot of your misshapen bed-a hospital bed.
"There's no saving you," the doctors had said and they called you
a hurricane thundercloud
there are no patients, no visitors
just ghastly illusions rolling in with the fog
which-whispering in your ear-will comfort you
if you can drown out the sound
beep. Beep,
the morphine alarm's out of tune, snowy television set out of focus-
but what does it feel like in the mortuary?
Your tears are running hot.
Blood is running icy.
You remember being small and swinging from a tree branch
it snapped and you were falling.
Hundreds of thousands of hospital beds
and all of them empty but yours.


  1. Good adaptation. I especially like the structure of the words. They're spaced out in a way that helps it flow. What does it mean to be dead enough?

  2. I liked your adaptation. The flow of the piece lies in how you structured it. Powerful imagery.

  3. I really liked the movement of this piece. You gave it dimension by breaking out of a linear narrative. It worked really well in contrast to the theme of death, left me with a surreal sensation which was cool.

  4. I loved the lines "Your tears are running hot"
    and "Blood is running icy". Very powerful descriptions that the reader can truly try to imagine. I also liked how you alarmed the readers with the "beep beep". Simple, but clever.

  5. The examination of the relationship between death and hospitals is well demonstrated in this piece by that blurry experience of being hospitalized. Good use of perspective.


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